Malcolm John Naden (born 5 November 1973) is an Australian former fugitive from the law. At the time of his capture and arrest in March 2012, Naden was reported as being one of Australia's most wanted men and his arrest attracted international media coverage, comparing Naden with famed outlaw Ned Kelly. Naden was in hiding from June 2005 until March 2012, wanted over murder and indecent assault offences. He was the most wanted man in the Australian state of New South Wales.
Naden was charged with the 2005 murder of a 24-year-old woman, aggravated indecent assault on a 15-year-old girl in 2004, and shooting with intent to murder a police officer in 2011, while he was on the run. Naden pleaded guilty to all 32 counts against him, and was sentenced to life imprisonment plus 40 years without parole in June 2013.
In June 2005, 24-year-old Kristy Scholes was found strangled to death in the West Dubbo home of her boyfriend's grandparents. A few days later, her boyfriends's cousin, Malcolm Naden, disappeared from that same home. Prior to Scholes' murder, Naden had been named as a suspect in the disappearance of another cousin, Lateesha Nolan, who had been reported missing in January 2005.
In December 2005, police closed Western Plains Zoo, Dubbo after Naden was sighted there. There was an additional confirmed sighting of Naden over the next month near Lightning Ridge. In March 2006, Naden avoided capture at an Aboriginal mission, near Condobolin. In January 2007, police placed an A$50,000 bounty on his capture. By January 2009, Naden was thought to be located near Kempsey, and by August 2010 he was believed to be living in dense bushland near Gloucester and Scone. By early 2011, the police doubled Naden's bounty to A$100,000, and increased it further again to A$250,000 in December.
On 7 December 2011, a police officer from the Tactical Operations Unit was shot during an unsuccessful operation to capture Naden in bushland near Nowendoc. Naden was subsequently charged with the attempted murder of the officer.
Naden was captured on 22 March 2012 in a run-down cabin approximately 30 kilometres (19 mi) west of Gloucester by heavily armed officers from the Tactical Operations Unit in a night operation, and charged with the murder of Scholes. He faced court later that day and was refused bail.
On 14 April 2012, Naden was escorted from Goulburn Correctional Centre to Dubbo, where he assisted police by identifying a site at Butlers Falls, south of Dubbo. It is suspected that the remains of his cousin, Lateesha Nolan, are buried at that site, but no remains have been found. Naden was later charged with the murder of Nolan and 14 counts each of burglary and theft committed while on the run.
In 2013, Naden pleaded guilty to 18 offences including the murders of Scholes and Nolan. He received a minimum prison sentence of 21 years for Nolan's murder, but was given a life sentence for the murder of Scholes. Other charges included the attempted murder of the police officer in 2011, breaking and entering offences and the indecent assault of a 12 year old girl.  Justice Derek Price said Naden had shown no remorse and there was a high risk he would reoffend because he has threatened to kill again, stating that "Life outside of prison is not an option for you". Naden said "thank you, your honour" after the sentence was handed down.
A dramatised version of the capture of Naden was aired on television on the Seven Network on 11 September 2013. This special television event, an episode of The Force: Behind the Line, presents the full story of “Strike Force Durkin", providing an insight into the fugitive that previously the viewers were not aware of. It re-aired on 13 September 2013.
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